Girls Tennis Team Serves Up a Strong Start to the Season

All Photos Taken by Kesta Fang

The girls' tennis team of Malden High School started off their season undefeated with a consistent record of 5-0, which is unquestionably a big improvement from the 3-2 start of the previous year and brought a great opening. In addition to the regular workouts, members' passion for tennis and the team is also on point.

Singles player, Chloe Chen ready for the game

Two of the team's captains are senior Yuki Yang and junior Chloe Chen; Yang has served as captain since the start of her senior year, and Chen has only done so this season. Both players are taking their positions seriously and doing their best for the squad. For instance, Yang would like to be a backbone that the team could “properly rely on and comfortably go to for help, being a good role model for future captains at Malden High.” Both captains wish to be supportive and honest to “uplift teammates that aren't confident,” as Chen stated.

Yang believes the top assistance comes from teammates’ motivation and encouragement, “You can always expect your teammates to be extremely supportive and pick you up in times of need, and celebrate any victory with you in times of success,'' especially when members share cupcakes to mark the success of their first game, the added happiness creates an atmosphere that is reminiscent of summer. Regardless of the competition, they still take pleasure in it; “whenever we hit a ball out or into the net, we focus on the next ball or point,” Chen said.

Chen has been playing the sport for a little over two years. In her opinion, “the tennis community makes it an amazing environment.” This season Chen hopes to “meet or exceed the expectations of the past years of tennis girls and captains, and find more assured and positive answers for questions of tennis.

Tennis began as a hobby for Yang. It later became the connection with her fellow tennis peers, “an outlet for my competitive side,” and an integral part of her daily routine. Yang's personal goal is to develop her confidence in skills and “hone skills, especially in singles, in order to reach a level at which I can compete in state games and surprise myself with results that would exceed the expectations I had for myself at the beginning of the year,” she noted. 

From left to right, Isabelle Tan, Julianna Lin, Sarah Pham

Isabelle Tan, a sophomore who has been exposed to tennis since elementary school, explained that having tennis and her favorite teammates is a “win-win” for her. On the team, she loves to observe the skills of new people she is playing with and then improve her game presentation. Balancing everything in life is a difficult thing for a lot of people—this is the same for Tan; after all, it could have a huge impact if loses it. About her view on opponents, Tan thinks, “It's a really interesting and fun task to adapt to their different playing styles in order to beat them.”

Another sophomore member who had been involved last year decided to continue it for the remainder of their high school career. Although busy with school and life, not only for herself but also for her team, learning more basic skills is vital to becoming indestructible. “It's very competitive, but we try to maintain good sportsmanship at all times. So rather than being hostile towards them, just be kind and just play, and have fun.”

Tennis team celebrating after a game

To Tan, tennis, no doubt, is nostalgic and indispensable including the emotions associated with it and its memories. Just like Tan said, "I incorporate it into almost every conversation I have which I do not think my friends are grateful is a staple to my life and I hope to be like the grandpas I see at my local tennis courts and play until I'm 65+."

The huge transformation that Yang would like to see is joining forces, “[boys and girls] help one another and really create a stronger, more unified tennis community with no discrimination against genders.” At the end of the interview, Yang is grateful to coaches who “helped us improve and hone our skills, all while being amazing mentors that we could all look up to.”

The Malden High School Girls' Tennis team welcomes and accepts people who are trying tennis, constantly doing their best, and challenging themselves for the second GBL championship award.

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